Obituary of Warren Rice
Warren Rice passed away suddenly on May 4, 2017, after celebrating his 88th birthday. He was born in Worcester, MA, and was the 2nd of 5 children born to Lillian and Harry Rice. The family moved to Gardner, MA, where Warren grew up and attended school. As a young boy, Warren developed his great love of the outdoors, inspired largely by his Uncle Len. He loved ice hockey, hunting, fishing, canoeing, and hiking. He also began honing his storytelling skills, entertaining his brothers and sisters, children, then nieces and nephews, with wonderfully imaginative stories. Upon graduation from high school, Warren worked at Florence Stove in Gardner to earn money to attend the Vesper George School of Art and Design in Boston. There he developed a love for painting with watercolors, which he enjoyed throughout his life, filling his home and others' with artistic creations.
After a year of art school, Warren joined the Air Force and served for 4 years, including a tour in the Korean War. Upon discharge, Warren married Geraldine Hamacek and together they raised 2 children, Doug and Linda. Warren worked as an architectural draftsman with the Corps of Engineers part time while living in Chicago and attending Wright Junior College. The family moved to Salt Lake City where he worked as an engineering draftsman for the Bureau of Reclamation while attending and graduating from the University of Utah. He was hired by the Toran Corporation in Salt Lake and eventually became President/General Manager. A move to San Diego and Los Angeles found him working for Eureka Industrial Pumps and Peerless Pumps, from which he retired in 1991. He met and married Corinne (Connie) Rice in 1980. They lived in Anaheim for 17 years before moving to Bellingham. They were married for 36 years: years full of love, laughter, and great adventures. When Connie retired from teaching, they moved to the beautiful NW to be near family, and built their home in Sudden Valley overlooking Lake Louise.
Warren was such a creative and talented man, and an avid outdoorsman. He ski-jumped with a team in the Air Force, was a life-long downhill and cross-country skier, hunted, fished, was a storyteller, an artist, and a photographer. He loved playing golf, both in Sudden Valley and with the Whatcom Seniors. He had an intense love of the mountains and "high places" and was happiest on a trail, hiking for miles. Moving near Mt. Baker was the perfect place for him to be!
Warren was very caring and devoted to his wife, son, daughter, and family and was very much loved by all. His sister Bobbi calls him "the best brother ever." Warren is survived by his wife Connie Rice, his son Doug (Pam) Rice, his daughter Linda (Dan) Lechtenberg, his sisters Roberta Starr and Marilyn Nee, sister-in-law Robin Rice, his grandchildren Ashlin Lechtenberg, Tom (Lynsi) Lechtenberg, and Emily (Korby) Adamson, and 2 great-grandchildren, Avalin and Max, along with very special nieces, nephews, and their families.
A private graveside service with military honors will be held for family. A celebration of life will be held for friends and family at Squalicum Boathouse on Friday June 23 from 2:30-4:30 p.m.